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CCA–TREATED LUMBER TO BE LABELED AS CONTAINING ARSENIC

Expect to find improved safety handling information when using wood pressure-treated with chromated copper arsenicals (CCA), a wood preservative that contains arsenic. EPA has completed its review of a plan developed by the American Wood Preservers Institute (AWPI) to strengthen information available to consumers for CCA-treated wood, which is widely used for many outdoor applications including decks, fences, posts, picnic tables, docks and playground equipment. The expanded consumer information program beings immediately, and by early fall will include labeling on all pieces of CCA-treated lumber, in-store displays and additional information available to the public.

CCA, a chemical containing arsenic, is used to pressure-treat wood to protect it against decay and insect damage. EPA learned that the previous consumer awareness program was not adequately informing the public, and in May the Agency asked the wood preservative industry and the public to propose ways to expeditiously enhance the existing consumer awareness program to ensure adequate information reaches consumers.

EPA will also carefully evaluate the success of the voluntary consumer information program as part of the overall reassessment of CCA. Further information is available at: http://www.epa.gov/scipoly/sap 

(Environmental Tip of the Week, July 6, 2001)

 

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